Pro-govt giants decimated in DC polls - RTHK
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Pro-govt giants decimated in DC polls

2019-11-25 HKT 03:10
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Pro-government candidates knew they were in tough for Sunday’s District Council polls, with voters highly motivated to express their views on the months of unrest through the ballot box.

But they didn’t expect to be crushed on this scale – few did.

At counting stations across the territory, similar pictures emerged. Huge piles of votes for pro-democracy candidates, dwarfing the stacks of ballots for their pro-government rivals.

Of 13 pro-establishment legislators who fought for a District Council, nine lost. The four winners were DAB Chairwoman Starry Lee, who barely managed to stave off a challenge from former League of Social Democrats legislator Leung Kwok-Hung; Lee's party mate Wilson Or, who only defeated People Power's Tam Tak-chi by 187 votes; the Federation of Trade Union's Kwok Wai-keung; and Paul Tse, who hung on to his seat in Wan Chai.

Outside of those races, it was a bloodbath.

The DAB’s Holden Chow, Horace Cheung, Vincent Cheng, and Edward Lau were all upset.

Vincent Cheng apologised to his supporters after his loss, saying he had tried his best. He said while he’s confident that his constituents fully affirm his past work as a District Council over the past decade, the “events over the past few months have influenced the outcome of this vote.”

But Horace Cheung – who's also an Executive Councillor – told reporters it was "too early to draw any conclusions" from the results, saying his party will be holding a central committee meeting to discuss the election later on Monday. But he said many aides to his election campaign had faced 'threats of violence'.

Three Federation of Trade Unions’ legislators – Alice Mak, Ho Kai-ming, and Michael Luk, lost.

Mak made no bones about who she thought was to blame for her shock election loss: the Carrie Lam administration.

"The administration's governance has given rise to so many public grievances. In the election campaign, pro-government candidates have been unfairly treated. This is a very important reason [for our poor performance]", she said.

She added that she has been faithfully serving her constituents' interests in Kwai Tsing for the past 26 years, and said in this polarised society, "it's not about our work, it's about our political stance." Mak added that she hopes things will stay as peaceful going forward as it was on election day, where no major incidents were reported.

Other prominent losers include outspoken Roundtable legislator Michael Tien, and one of the most controversial politicians on the ballot, Junius Ho.

Ho was apparently shocked by his defeat, saying in a concession speech on his Facebook page that “heaven and earth have been turned upside down”, and characterising the polls as ‘abnormal’ and ‘regrettable.

Ho’s remarks, as hyperbolic as they may seem, may not be so far off the mark. While most analysts had expected the pan-democratic camp to make solid gains, no one expected this sort of one-sided rout.


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Last updated: 2019-11-25 HKT 04:45